Vulnerability: The Birthplace of Joy, Love & Freedom

As a former Pastor, much of my sense of being was derived from the church I led for 10 years. Now nearly 2 years after my departure from said church, I am still struggling to detox from ministry and to find my sense of fulfillment and connection from who I am rather than what I do. In addition, I am also a  fallen Pastor with a “failed” marriage as part of my credentials, thus I am continually confronted by  shame, both from people who only know and see me in my former role as a clergyman and from my own inner accuser.

In her TEDx talk, Brene’ Brown describes her search search for connection and her journey through shame in her quest for Wholeheartedness.

This is one profound talk that is deeply relevant to all.

Brene Brown PhD is a research professor at the University of Houston.

She has spent the past ten years studying vulnerability, courage, authenticity, and shame. Brené spent the first five years of her decade-long study focusing on shame and empathy, and is now using that work to explore a concept that she calls Wholeheartedness. She asks: How do we learn to embrace our vulnerabilities and imperfections so that we can engage in our lives from a place of authenticity and worthiness? How do we cultivate the courage, compassion, and connection that we need to recognize that we are enough – that we are worthy of love, belonging, and joy?


About johnmusick

revealist, writer, speaker, consultant, life-coach, polymath
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One Response to Vulnerability: The Birthplace of Joy, Love & Freedom

  1. rob lewin says:

    Lots to comment on.
    1. The de-tox process is much longer than most folks think. I think it’s 5 years. It was for me. Unfortunately, specific parts of our lives need to change so we don’t keep bathing in shame. Eventually, not hanging out with ministry types happens. But now they’re the people who can help, listen and believe in you. But it’s a double edged sword. They bring the ministry front and center and shame all over again. It’s not their intent. They’re mostly innocent. But what finally the realization that “I’m not going to make money off of spiritual things” must take hold. Even if it’s just for a year or two. Being totally separate from the “getting paid to be spiritual” club. I need to be honest about the fact that I’m not in that fraternity anymore. It’s over. Once I began to get care and love from those outside my old ministry circles, healing accelerated.

    If I’m not going to get money from ministry anymore, then I must re-tool and get money from somewhere else. The sooner I’m supporting myself I have new friends, new excitement, and growing self worth. I took an assistant manager job at Kinkos. It saved my life. It was $30K, not really enough, but it was fun, I never dreaded it, and actually caring about other people was so unique to them that it was cool.

    When you’re busy, your inner accuser is forced to be put on hold. And over the days and weeks they gave me more and more responsibility. And then I had less and less time for my inner accuser. Where I worked was really close to my former employer. So people I knew would come in all the time. At first the shame was so thick that I could barely breathe. But after a few months, f*^k them.

    These new people need me, like me, and want me to stay. I got promotions and more money pretty fast. And low and behold I found out the secret…I was doing ministry. And I had enough energy to love my neighbors. All that time at church and I never really talked to people desperate for just a crumb of love, and I never had time for my neighbors. Now I did. I had time for rest, rhythm, peace.

    That’s all for this post. I’ll send you the rest on a FB msg.


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